Iconic glass-paned church converted to Catholic cathedral

GARDEN GROVE, Calif. (AP) — An iconic, glass-paned church in Southern California that once housed a booming televangelist ministry has been transformed into a cathedral to give the region’s Catholics a long-awaited and much larger place to congregate and pray.

The landmark building, with a facade made up of nearly 11,000 glass panes, was long known as Rev. Robert H. Schuller’s Crystal Cathedral.

It appears unchanged from the outside. But the cavernous house of worship is covered on the inside with quatrefoil window shades that send sunlight cascading across a stone altar, wooden pews and steel crucifix befitting a Catholic cathedral.

The new Christ Cathedral will be dedicated July 17 after a $77 million makeover.

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange bought the building after Schuller’s church went bankrupt in 2010. The diocese has long sought a larger cathedral to meet the needs of now-densely populated Orange County, which has about a million Catholics.

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